27 new SUVs, pickups ‘will not drive’ growth
Kisumu residents fault county for buying new vehicles while contractors have not been paid for months. ‘They live in the county headquarters corridors, begging for their cash’
The Kisumu government has been taken to task to explain why it bought 27 new vehicles a year to the elections.
The vehicles include 25 Ford Ranger double cabins, one Everest and a Suzuki Grand Vitara. Residents say many projects have stalled for lack of funds.
Kisumu City Residence Voice chairman Audi Ogada said, “The county is haunted by poor service. It has debts with contractors and suppliers. Some of them are wallowing in poverty, while others live on the county corridors for months begging for payment.”
He said most county departments are understaffed.
Ogada said residents should be hired before the government thinks of buying vehicles.
“We recall sometime back there were some ve- hicles purchased and interviews for drivers done. To date, we don’t know where the vehicles went. The drivers were never employed,” he said.
Ogada said some county vehicles are used for personal activities.
“I feel somebody has a stake in this matter and I totally disagree with the purchase based on the fact that other urgent issues need to be resolved first,” he said.
A county employee said the vehicles will be used for revenue collection. He said each of the seven subcounties will get a vehicle.
The remaining vehicles could be used by departments.
East Seme MCA Aggrey Ogosi questioned the timing of the purchase. “We cannot have a county that keeps buying vehicles because the vehicles are adding to the county’s operation and maintance costs. It means the county will have little, if anything, left for projects that will benefit residents” he said.
Ogosi said the county has so many vehicles that some are given to nonemployees.
County chief Finance officer Khepas Kasera was unavailable for comment.
In 2013, the county was put on the spot over the purchase of new vehicles for executives.
The vehicles bought by the Kisumu government park outside county headquarters yesterday